Color Education for the 21st Century

It's time to redesign how color is taught from the ground up.

Kids deserve a color curriculum that is:

Introducing

Color Explorers in the Classroom

 

Color Explorers in the Classroom is an educational initiative to empower creativity by providing affordable, fun and easy ways for kids (and adults!) to explore the art and science of color in the 21st Century.

How can you transform your classroom into a Color Explorer Classroom?

It's as easy as 1 - 2 - 3!

 

1

Add Cyan, Magenta and Yellow Green

 A photo taken through diffraction grating shows the two ends of the spectrum overlapping. Magenta appears when red light blends with blue light.

 A photo taken through diffraction grating shows the two ends of the spectrum overlapping. Magenta appears when red light blends with blue light.

Step One is to expand the six basic colors - Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue and Violet - of tempera and acrylic paints usually available in the classroom to nine basic colors that include Primary Cyan, Primary Magenta and Yellow Green. 
We call these colors the "New Nine". 

Why add more three more colors to the basic set of rainbow colors in the classroom?

The rainbow colors of ROYGBIV do not include the purples and magentas we see when the red end of the spectrum overlaps the blue end of the spectrum. Yellow green fills the big gap between green and yellow.

Kids learn best by open ended explorations. Step back and let them play with this set of new colors in the classroom. 

More colors = more fun!   

 
2

Mix Colors with CMY

 Playing with Cyan-Magenta-Yellow primaries makes kids happy!  

 Playing with Cyan-Magenta-Yellow primaries makes kids happy!
 

Step Two encourages kids to explore color in paint using Cyan-Magenta-Yellow primaries in addition to the traditional Red-Yellow-Blue primary colors.

Why mix colors with CMY instead of RYB?

Although CMY primaries are most often associated with the CMYK system of printing, they also work in paint.

Cyan + Magenta = Blues and Violets.
Magenta + Yellow = Reds and Oranges
Yellow + Cyan = Blue Greens and Yellow Greens

Mixing with CMY produces brighter colors and less mud, so kids feel a sense of accomplishment instead of feeling frustrated.

Confidence in mixing colors empowers kids to use color for creative expression.

 

3

Combine Science and Art

Playing with prisms in the Vibe of Portland art studio. Vibe of Portland is the non-profit partner for testing the Color Explorers curriculum and materials.

Playing with prisms in the Vibe of Portland art studio. Vibe of Portland is the non-profit partner for testing the Color Explorers curriculum and materials.

 Step Three introduces kids to the concept of color as light. Encourage kids to play with color using prisms and computers as well as traditional art media. Color mixing experiments are done in both light and paint.

Why introduce the science of color at such an early age?

Color bridges science and art. Color explorations fit naturally into both STEM and STEAM programs. 

 

Color Explorers in the Classroom
Development Timeline

*Annual Convention of the
National Art Education Association (NAEA)
March 22-24, 2018 in Seattle, Washington, USA